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Neptune and the Dream in the US

I read an article, The Secret Sharer, by Jane Mayer in the May 23 issue of The New Yorker that has gotten a lot of attention. (1) It is about the escalating prosecution of whistle-blowers by the Obama Administration. Although when he took office in 2009, President Obama “championed the cause of government transparency and spoke admiringly of whistle-blowers,” his administration has “pursued leak prosecutions with a surprising relentlessness.” Gabriel Schoenfeld, a conservative political scientist, is quoted in the article: “Ironically, Obama has presided over the most draconian crackdown on leaks in our history—even more so than Nixon.”

The Secret Sharer is specifically about the alleged misdeeds of former government employee, Thomas Drake — a quote from whom will get me to the astrological content of this blog. After acknowledging his dashed hopes about Obama, who he had expected “to roll back the prosecutions launched by the Bush Administration,” Drake says, “…. power is incredibly destructive. It’s a weird, pathological thing. I also think the intelligence community co-opted Obama, because he’s rather naïve about national security. He’s accepted the fear and secrecy. We’re in a scary space in this country.”

I’m thinking now simply about the ongoing disappointment of Obama supporters as a signature of the Sun square Neptune in his natal horoscope. In its problematic characteristics, Sun with Neptune can suggest someone who is easily influenced by others, who has influence over others, or is susceptible to both glamour and flattery.

The U.S. Sibly horoscope has Mars at 21º Gemini in the 7th house, square an elevated (closest to the 10th-house cusp) Neptune at 22º Virgo, sign of its detriment. As a nation, we have a collective storyline that includes both nebulous (or ill-defined) actions or motivations, and a susceptibility to propaganda or seduction, side-by-side with a guileless belief in altruistic action.

What a perfect fit for the country, as President Obama’s natal Mars at 22º Virgo is exactly conjunct the country’s Neptune.

(President Obama also has the natal Sun-Neptune midpoint at 25º34’ Virgo, with Mars at 22º34’ Virgo. It’s a three-degree orb, which is larger than I usually use, but with a larger than life character, perhaps a wider orb can be allowed.)

Although I can’t remember the details, in his book, Political Astrology, Michael O’Reilly made the observation that since the advent of televised campaigning, the candidate who wins the presidential election has a prominent Neptune in the radix. Neptune, of course, rules the media, and the “winner” has to play well on the television.  This perhaps suggests that the “dark side” of Neptune, (i.e., weak but glamorous, etc.) has become a stronger feature in presidential politics.

The nation has had the transit of Neptune over the U.S. Moon. (The transit was precise from March 2010 through January 2011. In November, at the direct station, Neptune is at 28º 08’ Aquarius and the U.S. Moon is at 27º10’, less than a degree apart). The Moon governs the people, the populace. As a nation, we have been “under the influence,” have been beguiled and beguiling, seduced and seductive, for the promise and hope of Neptune in all of its possibilities.

I’m finishing this on Monday morning with the Moon at 27º Aquarius, a lunar return in the Sibly chart. I wanted to close this blog with the positive, altruistic note of Neptune, and a nice synchronicity is showing up to assist with that.

I opened an email about the talk that Van Jones (of The American Dream Movement) gave this weekend at Netroots Nation. According to the Truthout email, Jones “channeled the disappointment and the heartbreak so many on the left have been feeling, and laid out the dream of a truly different future – one we can build together.”

Van Jones is a Virgo, with Uranus and Pluto on either side of the Sun. (3) There is no birth time; this is a sunrise chart.

Pluto, considered in modern astrology to be the “higher octave” of Mars, is at 22º51′ Virgo conjunct the U.S. Neptune — a telling signature of a call to disrupt the complacency and confusion of status quo Neptune and reawaken an authentic and vivid compassion for the common good.


(1) All quotes from: The Secret Sharer

(2) We Are Deep Patriots

(3) Sunrise chart: Van Jones, September 20, 1968, Jackson, TN. Source: Wikipedia



  1. Transiting Saturn has been right on Jones’ SN and will move to conjunct his Venus Mercury and oppose his natal Saturn in Libra for his midlife Saturn opposition beginning in autumn. I wonder if this aspect will help or heed his campaign.

  2. Thanks. One of your very best.

    I think the Sibly you use is the 5:10 PM, right? Liz Greene proposes 4:50. I think 5:10 is correct because I believe very strongly that Neptune IS trapped in the US chart. Just look at what happens to our artists, poets, musicians and other Neptunians.

  3. Hi Mary,

    Another excellent column. Thank you.

    I wanted to add that Transiting Neptune as been conjoined to Barack Obama’s South Node rising in his first house for a long, long time. When adding that to his natal Sun-Neptune square and the cross-chart comparisons to the USA’s chart, we have Obama’s nodes operating in a fated way in his life at present. Yes, I think he’s being “handled” and co-opted by others and his naivete re the utopian ideal of a bi-partisan consensus are taking him down the proverbial primrose path.

    I don’t see Neptune as the ruler of the media. I assign Mercury to media and Uranus to broadcasting. To me, Neptune is propaganda, subterfuge and out and out dishonesty. Pluto, of course, is highly Manipulative, persuasive and coercive when it comes to “mass appeal.”

    BTW, the Table of Contents for the upcoming issue of TMA is absolutely fantastic!

  4. P.S. – Mary, on the rulerships I mentioned. I only meant to share my understanding of them through the lens of mundane astrology. I didn’t at all mean it as ‘correcting.’ There is much room for discussion in all branches of astrology. I’m happy that we’ve got this blog where we can freely explore.

    • Hi there Claudia,

      Oh, I know you were not being critical…thanks for commenting..I think of Neptune as the imagery/film part of media..and yes, propaganda and deceit.

      I think that strong aspect in the Sibly has many layers of meaning..

      and I do agree with Mercury ruling in mundane terms..I think I was thinking very broadly in symbolic terms..

      and yes, a long transit over Obama’s SN c US Moon..

      I’m not sure I agree with the quotes I cited, just noting these things as an interesting display of the symbols..

      many thanks for your always keen insights!

      Warmly and Happy Solstice to you Claudia..

      I do think it’s all quite

  5. Hi Mary, that’s how I see Neptune working too. The imaginary/film aspect. The ultra-dramatic example is Leni Reifenstahl’s film “Triumph of the Will” and Goebbel’s propaganda efforts that sold Nazi Germany to unwitting Germans.

    I think also of Winston in Orwell’s “1984” — the rewriting of history; the way he sent the rewrites through that system of vacuum tubes.

    The shadow side of Neptune’s sojourn through Pisces is concerning. I’m seeing it as an inundation both terrestrial and of the psyche. A “swamping.” We have so much to discuss!

  6. You might like to do some astrological research on the birth chart of Jane Mayer and
    what forces impel her to dig into the dirty side of politics and governmental leaders. I remember her THE DARK SIDE (if I remember the title correctly) book based on researches that she did for THE NEW YORKER a few years ago. I had to get my local library to order the book for me because they hadn’t already bought their own copy.

  7. This is long past the date of the article on the US/Neptune and Van Jones. I just wanted to share my intuition: all eyes on Van Jones! looking at his sunrise chart I just was moved by the feeling that this man is a true leader-the Aries NNode leading all that Virgo consciousness pulling forever to stand up and stand out even though his motivations are actually grounded in modesty and perhaps even depression from time to time. Oh that we could have him as President but perhaps he will be much more effective leading the progressives.

  8. The Sun Square Neptune is also the sign of the con artist.

    Would like to see you use the 8 degree scorpio rising chart Mary, as I am a firm beliver in this chart as America’s natal chart.

    Thanks for the article.

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